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Saturday, December 30, 2006

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1 John 2:12-17
Psalm 96
Luke 2:36-40

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the january blues

"Carnal allurements, enticements for the eye, the life of empty show — all these are from the world." —1 John 2:16

"Have no love for the world, nor the things that the world affords. If anyone loves the world, the Father's love has no place in him" (1 Jn 2:15). Christmas is nothing less and can be nothing more than receiving the Father's love through Jesus in the Spirit. Therefore, if we love the world, both the Father's love and Christmas are displaced, pushed out of our lives. Consequently, if we celebrate the worldly "Christmas," paradoxically we deprive ourselves of the real Christmas.

Some are naive enough to think they can do both, but the Spirit and the flesh are diametrically opposed (Gal 5:17). We can't serve two masters, even at Christmas time (Lk 16:13). If we are the world's friend, we are God's enemy (Jas 4:4).

May your Christmas be real and therefore lasting. May your Christmas continue throughout the entire new year and not leave you cold and empty with January blues. May you give thanks to God and talk about the Christ Child to all who look forward to the deliverance of God's people (Lk 2:38). May you grow in strength, be filled with wisdom, and may the grace of God be upon you this Christmas and new year (Lk 2:40).

Prayer:  Holy Spirit, may I break with the world so as not to stifle You. May Christmas not disappear but continue and grow in my heart.

Promise:  "She was constantly in the temple, worshiping day and night in fasting and prayer." —Lk 2:37

Praise:  Father Tim took extra time during the week to listen to the Lord while preparing for Sunday Mass. During his homily, a man was moved to tears and accepted Jesus into his heart.

Reference:  (Grow in holiness in the new year by praying the Bible each day. For encouragement, order our tape How to Pray the Bible on audio AV 82-3 or on video V-82.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 13, 2006

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